“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.” – W. B. Yeats
This month was a bit sparse on the reading front but there were still books that got finished.
- The Festive House – Alison May
- Autumn Skies Over Ruby Falls – Holly Martin
- The Taxidermist – Shazea Quraishi
The first two weeks of November have come and gone. Fast.
The first week was all about conversations with people around the globe. And all of them seemed urgent and necessary. So I gave them my all. So that going into the second week, I had to think about my boundaries and start to control the conversations. Work more to my schedule and energy levels and needs rather than others.
The second week of November was no less demanding, as I had to plan a number of differences workshops that were/ are coming up. So this week has definitely been a lot of work going on behind the scenes to keep the shop front neat, sort of thing.
So my energy levels and attention spans have been up and down already this month and this has affected the time and attention and care I could offer up to my memoir.
Two weeks in then to the NaNoWriMo challenge and nearly 20000 words down. And considering all that I’ve just shared about November so far, I’m pretty pleased with the word count. Ideally, it would be good to be at 25000 as it is the half-way mark, but it is what it is. And it’s 20000 more words than I would have created if I’d not taken up this challenge. Win win I say.
I might not clock up as many words in the second half of the month as I move into editing mode. But we’ll see. The aim is to complete the current essay around grief as well as complete another essay about slavery, DNA and my body. So plenty tochall be getting on with and hopefully I’ve got a better handle on my diary as we enter the second half of the month.
Working in partnership with Northumberland Wildlife Trust, we bring you a unique and new creative writing workshop tapping into the wonder of nature.
The Trust is spearheading a special campaign to raise awareness about the importance of insects to all of life, including us humans. The Trust is trying to raise awareness as well as money that can be used to protect these vital players in life as we know it.
Taking inspiration from these small and mighty creatures, this workshop will be a 1.5 hour generative writing workshop where attendees will explore new ways to write about the natural world as well as our connection within it. Following a series of prompts and possibilities, participants will have a chance to share their work within the group.
As I shared in September, I might not be meeting up with people face to face, and staying home all cosy and safe, I’m becoming more social virtually as I appear on a number of different podcasts.
Well a couple more episodes came out last month which I think I should share here.
The Nurture Project, hosted by Sophy Dale, is a podcast series which came out of an online project on how we can nurture ourselves, which ran in 2020. This is a series which features podcast interviews with a range of inspiring and insightful creative small business owners, including myself. In this conversation, I talk about all things self-care, ranging from wild swimming to hand cream, and the importance of caring for our sources of inspiration as well as ourselves. Take a listen, there is wisdom to be shared.
The next conversation I want to share with you is with the lovely Naomi Woddis for The Two of Us Shorts. Originally broadcast on Reel Rebels Radio, here we discuss the power of creativity to work through trauma and my relationship with nature and its power to heal. This was such a juicy and liberating episode where I take a deep dive into the difficult stuff. Have a listen and let me know what you think by getting in touch.
I’ll continue reading a poetry book a day and writing a poem from the inspiration. But I’m steeping up my writing by taking part in the month long challenge of writing a novel, NaNoWriMo.org
it’s been a few years since I’ve taken on this challenge to write 50,000 words in 30 days but I feel I just need this accountability and energy this challenge brings to get my out of my no writing rut.
And I have already felt it’s benefits as I am 5000 word done. It’s amazing what can be done once you get your arse in the seat, turn up and write. Keep tuning in to see how I get on.
October turned out to be a great month of reading after I set myself the Sealy challenge; of reading one book of poetry a day for a month.
Here’a the books I got through:
- Other Poetry, no.23 – anthology of poetry
- Writing for my life – Nancy Levin
- The World Don’t End – Charles Simic
- Our Dead Behind Us – Audre Lorde
- Butcher’s Dog 12 – anthology of poetry
- Butcher’s Dog 13 – anthology of poetry
- What to look for in Autumn – Ladybird Book
- Facts about the moon – Dori Anne Laux
- Undersong – Audre Lorde
- Postcolonial Love Poem – Natalie Diaz
- What the Water Gave Me – Pascal Petit
- It Ends With Her – Brianna Labuskes
- I am an Island – Tasmin Galidas
- The Crossroads of Should and Must – Elle Lune
- Danger on Peaks – Gary Synder
- The Goddess Oracle – Amy Sophia and Mara Rashinsky
- Blue Front – Martha Collins
- The Autumn House – Alison May
- The Winter House – Alison May
“If you can see your path laid out in front of you step by step, you know it’s not your path. Your own path you make with every step you take. That’s why it’s your path.” – Joseph Campbell
I’m stuck within
the healing threshold
drowning in grief.
to turn back,
to move on.
raised, I lick
a November thirst.
across the silken
land to peace.
give me your light;
a blister in this bitter air,
as once again
with head down
and heart up,
I set forth
into becoming adrift.